Rachel Maddow Show gets statements from IHF and Scott Lively on Anti-Homosexuality Bill

Finally, the International Healing Foundation speaks:

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IHF says:

We condemn any harsh and extreme punishment of persons who identify as homosexual or who engage in homosexual behavior. Instead, we advocate education and counseling for those with unwanted Same-Sex Attraction.

I contacted Richard Cohen in March about Caleb Brundidge’s activities in Uganda wanting to know if he agreed with what Brundidge was teaching there. No answer.

It is not clear what Cohen believes about criminalization of homosexuality. He opposes the death penaly apparently but what does he favor? Apparently, Cohen favors therapy over jail for those with “unwanted SSA” but what does he favor for those who do not want to change? Perhaps Richard and Scott Lively are on the same page.

Note: Andrew Marin was slated to appear on the show but was cut due to a previous segment going long. It appears he will be on a future show, perhaps on Thursday night.

15 thoughts on “Rachel Maddow Show gets statements from IHF and Scott Lively on Anti-Homosexuality Bill”

  1. I am glad to see he is not agreeing with the Uganda bill. That I would like to take all mean people to task is true – however – this is a good compromise. It doesn’t mean giving up – it means our efforts have rec’d some reward.

  2. I have heard him say he was “misled”, “duped” and “sucked in”. He was tricked somehow. I have not heard him say:

    “I really screwed up. I should have done some homework. I should have heeded the warnings. I should have spoken out then. I should have denounced this law and Scott Lively’s agenda much sooner. I take full responsibility for my carelessness and any harm I may have caused. I am truly sorry.”

    That might help.

  3. Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity. — Hanlon’s Razor.

  4. Someone should give him the opportunity to sit down, on camera, and tell the whole story. I would suggest the Rachel Maddow show. After all, he says this situation is “worth all the news media coverage possible”.

  5. According to what he told Fox40 News, he thought he was “preaching about open communication in parenting.”

    “I’m trying to help people understand the differences and how to communicate and how to listen to each other.”

    Wow. It must have been quote a shock when he found out the conference was actually about the evils of homosexuality — not effective parenting — and that he would not be the only one speaking, as he had supposed — and that Scott Lively would be the keynote speaker.

    Of course, he admits he knew almost nothing before he went. Duped. Misled. Sucked in. I’ll bet he is hopping mad that he was used in this way. Someone should have warned him.

  6. Well… Schmierer did know Lively would be there and what Lively’s agenda entails. Correct me if I am wrong Warren, but I think you said on another thread that you had spoken to Schmierer before he left for the conference.

    I would like to get someone to ask him on the record about the trip across the Atlantic, and just what is meant by ‘the Nazis were all gay.’

  7. I am perhaps a bit too much the pragmatist, Michael. But from that first time Randy Thomas quoted Schmierer in October something stunk. It still reeks.


    I should have pointed out that what also came after the Kampala conference besides that Langa annoucement was a whole lot of other homophobia out of Uganda.

  8. Uganda has a gay Bishop? Surely not under Orombi… Catholic? Why do I have the feeling that Don Schmierer is making this all up as he goes along? Schmierer blogs:

    For starters, I didn’t know much about the conference when I agreed to speak there. At first I thought I was the only speaker and was surprised to hear that Caleb Lee Brundidge of the International Healing Foundation and Dr. Scott Lively of Defend the Family International would be speaking as well. I disagree with several of their respective organization’s beliefs about this issue and have found several comments to be inflammatory.

    Well, the old what did he know and when did he know it idea comes up. When did Schmierer know that Scott Lively was going to speak and what belief doesn’t Schmierer agree with concerning Lively. I guess the idea expressed by the fellow on the airplane with Schmierer, ‘the Nazis were all gay,’ could have been Schmierer complaining about Lively and been bad reporting. But that still doesn’t explain the idea that ‘Africa is a big focus for Exodus and they want to keep it anti-gay.’


    And just when and how did Schmierer learn about Scott Lively’s participation? The above would seem to say he knew Lively was going to be there before flying to Europe; and Schmierer was either agreeing with Lively or disagreeing with Lively. As I remember those who got in touch with Alan Chambers to express concern, Chambers responded something to the effect that Don Schmierer was not necessarily representing Exodus but was going just for himself, his own ministry – evidently Chambers did not express any concerns with Schmierer and so did not learn from him. But from the airplane statements, Schmierer seemed to think he was going in the name of Exodus.

    Months later, as I scanned news reports I became aware of Uganda’s horrible Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009 – legislation that would punish homosexual behavior by death and would force all those who suspect such behavior to report them. The bill warrants outrage and shock from all groups and individuals to be sure, but I was surprised to hear Ms. Maddow assert that my message somehow contributed to “inspiring” this legislation – a claim that could not be further from the truth.

    So did Don Schmierer speak out against the existing law criminalizing homosexuality while in Uganda? Seems like he didn’t. I agree with the guy who said back in March:

    Overall, I am surprised that an Exodus board member would go to a conference like this in a country where criminalization of homosexuality is still an issue. My impression is that Exodus had no position on such things or if there was a position it was that homosexuality should not be considered a crime. For a change, I agree with Exgaywatch that it sends the wrong message for these people to go where the agenda is not simply congruence with religious teaching but also on state intervention in private behavior.

    Evidently, if it keeps the country ‘anti-gay’ Schmierer & Exodus were all for criminalization and if not incarceration, forced therapy. Let’s not forget that when asked:

    “Who decides what is natural?” Schmierer responded directly to the second question saying that his role at the workshop involves teaching about family values; other facilitators would answer questions about homosexuality being unnatural later in the conference.

    It was Scott Lively who came later. And if this transpired:

    At the end of the day, all the international presenters at the seminar commended Ugandans for taking a strong stand against homosexuality through their constitution, which criminalizes homosexuality, as well as through efforts like conferences that encourage parents and concerned citizens to come up with strategies against homosexuality.

    Was Don Schmierer merely blinded by his zeal to keep Uganda and all of Africa anti-gay? Schmierer once quoted on the Exodus blog as saying:

    What this David Bahati is introducing does not reflect the Ugandans that I have ministered too. The only place where I have run into this thinking is from some former Russian hardliners and that was only a very small percentage of the participants attending my seminars. After some challenges from me (except for one person) they softened up and came around to a more redemptive position.

    And yet what immediately came on the heels of the Kampala conference was this from Stephen Langa of the FLN, the organizer of the anti-gay conference:

    Kampala Anti-gay activists in Uganda Saturday formed a pressure group to discourage homosexuality, following a two-day conference of religious leaders, teachers and social workers in the capital Kampala.


    The group, to be called the Anti-Gay Task Force, is intended to “fight against the spread of homosexuality and lesbianism in the country,” spokesman for the group Stephen Langa told reporters. Same sex-relationships and marriages are illegal in Uganda, and human rights groups have criticized the government for harassing homosexuals.

    So maybe you see why I still am of the opinion that some people are playing hard and fast with the truth.

  9. Eh…. add this to the last blockquote in my statement above.

    The task-force said that it would one day “wipe out” gay practices in the African state.

  10. Don Schmierer speaks out on the Exodus blog. He admits he “didn’t know much about the conference when [he] agreed to speak there”, he explains his reasons for going — and he strongly opposes this Bill:

    “What is true, however, and worth all the news media coverage possible, is the tragic nature of and heartbreaking potential this bill holds.”

    I agree. At this point, a press conference might be in order.


  11. It is encouraging that various statements of opposition to this Bill are finally coming from the three key players at the Conference — “albeit late”. It still seems that Stephen Langa may not fully believe that the men sitting at the table with him really do oppose this law.

    Maybe they would not all be smiling if he did.

    Considering all that has transpired, it has been suggested that it would be helpful for organizations like Exodus to draft a very clear “Policy Statement against the Criminilization of Homosexuality” — to serve as a guide and standard in the future.

    I think the idea has merit. Perhaps they could send one to Langa. BTW, has he been sent a copy of the letter? He reportedly dismissed this one as the work of gay activists…

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